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  #1  
Old 05-14-2008, 09:20 PM
h1a8 h1a8 is offline
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Default How to tweak equalizer for freqs below 80Hz?

The cowon d2 has the equalizer setting started at 80hz. Is there any way I can lower this band? I know the bass drops off (from RMAA tests) so I want to fix the lower frequency some to give me a near flat sound with more clear bass (preferably a sound similar to sony a728). In other words, can someone tell me how to manipulate the equalizer band for frequencies lower than 80hz. Any other tricks for manipulating the band?


Also I've heard of adding resistance by resistance cables of some sort. Where can I buy these cables from? Do they make d2 sound better?


Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 05-14-2008, 09:29 PM
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No, the EQ is hardware based around the Wolfson CODEC, and 80Hz is the lowest this hardware EQ can do. It's pathetic, I know... The best thing you can do is turning on Mach3Bass - it centers around 65-70Hz, and it sounds way better than the EQ anyways. It's phase corrected, and it sounds very punchy, compared to the slightly more muddy EQ.

A resistor cable or a headphone amp will fix many shortcomings of the D2 with lower impedance phones (bass roll-off, background hiss, stereo crosstalk). You can look on eBay for an "Etymotic P>S adapter", "impedance adapter", or something similar.

Myself, I'm using a Corda Headsix amp with my D2, and I'm pretty happy with the improvements. Another thing I find great about an amp is that it provides a proper analog volume control - I just hate the +/- buttons.
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Old 05-15-2008, 06:54 PM
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Whoa, whoa, whoa... is that right? The D2 cant produce sound below 80Hz? Thats appalling! I feel like I just got cheated out of one of the best slices of the frequency spectrum!

And I feel like my HFI-780's are unloved! Speaking of which, those have been on backorder for at least 4 weeks now...
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Old 05-15-2008, 06:57 PM
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Of course it reproduces sound below 80Hz. The D2, like most other players reproduce frequencies down to about 20Hz.

The lowest equalizer center frequency is 80Hz, and you cannot center it below that. The EQ bandwidth (Q-factor) is unspecified, but a center frequency of 80Hz sure means frequencies between 60 and 100Hz are affected by the lowest EQ band of the Wolfson CODEC. This only applies if the lowest band really is a notch EQ, and not a shelf. It *should* have a shelf character, but I'm really not sure if this is the case. I have to test that with RMAA.

The Wolfson EQ isn't overly great, but at least it works somewhat like a professional "pseudo"-semi-parametric EQ - the lowest and highest bands are supposed to be shelves, while the tree middle bands are notches with two Q-factors (narrow and wide).
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:59 PM
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Okay, my misunderstanding. Thankyou for clarifying... I hope that first band is a shelf... (great analogy btw) but considering I don't know the difference right now, it probably doesn't matter.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:04 PM
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Here's a good image of different EQ filter forms - The lowest band on the D2 EQ should react like a low shelf, the 3 middle ones should react parametric, and the highest should react like a high shelf:

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Old 05-15-2008, 10:15 PM
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Sorry, I think I worded that wrong-- I should have said "hear the difference". Those EQ forms actually are pretty nifty though... I wasn't half off with my guess on the definition of shelf.
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Old 05-16-2008, 06:41 AM
h1a8 h1a8 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
No, the EQ is hardware based around the Wolfson CODEC, and 80Hz is the lowest this hardware EQ can do. It's pathetic, I know... The best thing you can do is turning on Mach3Bass - it centers around 65-70Hz, and it sounds way better than the EQ anyways. It's phase corrected, and it sounds very punchy, compared to the slightly more muddy EQ.

A resistor cable or a headphone amp will fix many shortcomings of the D2 with lower impedance phones (bass roll-off, background hiss, stereo crosstalk). You can look on eBay for an "Etymotic P>S adapter", "impedance adapter", or something similar.

Myself, I'm using a Corda Headsix amp with my D2, and I'm pretty happy with the improvements. Another thing I find great about an amp is that it provides a proper analog volume control - I just hate the +/- buttons.
Does the Headsix add resistance (impedance) like an adapter? If so how much?

Thanks!
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Old 05-16-2008, 08:46 AM
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An amp adds infinite resistance, taking all the work off the internal amp of the D2. Since the internal amp has no more headphone load to drive, all the issues are fixed even better than with an impedance adapter.

Here's a little comparison I did: http://rmaa.elektrokrishna.com/Compa...%20Headsix.htm

The Headsix does roll off the treble a bit when turned to maximum volume, but it's not as strong when turned to "listenable" volume levels... Other amps provide a more flat treble response, but I like what I hear.
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Old 05-16-2008, 01:18 PM
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Woah, those are sweet graphs... I totally want a headsix, its just so much money... =D

Thats a little trippy though... Let me get this straight. 300 ohms unamped has a more flat, even range than 16 ohms unamped? Which sounds better? (Or rather, what is the real perceived difference in sound either case?)
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Old 05-16-2008, 03:18 PM
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Yes, that's the dilemma. The higher the impedance, the better the D2 amp behaves - but the volume gets very quiet as well with high impedance phones. The 300 Ohm HD650 have normal loud listening volume at level 50 (for me), that's probably way too quiet for most people.

Besides the D2 (or any other portable player, since most are way weaker) not being suited for driving phones above, say, 150 Ohm, I can't make any comparison in sound quality. The HD650 sounds way better than any IEM. But it's not a portable phone, of course, and it really needs a powerful desktop amp to reach its full potential.
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Old 05-17-2008, 12:33 PM
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Dang... I should get an impedance adapter. I don't really care much about high volumes. Right now my whole eq is at -10 to give me more precision in each volume increment, and I never have to go over 6 or 7... usually 4 or 5.

Glad I jumped into the conversation! I am such an airhead =D

Okay, so now my only question is would a DIY impedance adapter with plain old carbon film resistors or some such perform as well as a commercial adapter? Cause I would sure dont want to have to spend $30 and then some on an adapter and a 6.35mm to 3.5mm adapter so I could use it with my D2...

I cant see any reason why not, I just have to ask... =D
Just to be sure, you have to connect the resistors in series on each channel, not in parallel (across channels), right? Totally going to study Cptn Odegards page now... i'll need some heatshrink too... I cant wait for my HFI-780's. I tested my X3i's a while ago and the Zune Premium's beat them in clarity, soundstage, bass attack, and frequency range. By a lot. :-(
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Old 05-17-2008, 01:07 PM
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Commercial adapters use nothing else than regular resistors... some smaller ones like the UE impedance adapter probably have tiny SMT resistors inside, but that shows in the less-than-great sound quality.
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Old 05-17-2008, 01:22 PM
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Alright, thankyou very much! I would be so lost without help from guys like you! I am probably going to do a 160 ohm cable with the rest of my HFI-780's cable after I trim it. Its so perfect... everything is coming together. It just takes time, and my dwindling supply of patience! xD

So much work just to 'get you're groove on'!
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Old 05-17-2008, 09:10 PM
h1a8 h1a8 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
An amp adds infinite resistance, taking all the work off the internal amp of the D2. Since the internal amp has no more headphone load to drive, all the issues are fixed even better than with an impedance adapter.

Here's a little comparison I did: http://rmaa.elektrokrishna.com/Compa...%20Headsix.htm

The Headsix does roll off the treble a bit when turned to maximum volume, but it's not as strong when turned to "listenable" volume levels... Other amps provide a more flat treble response, but I like what I hear.
Is there a setting on the headsix to increase ohms to 300 or other levels?
I have 16ohm sony MDR-EX85LP earbuds (similar to the one that comes with the a810 and a720).
Are other headphone amps pretty good for boosting the impedance to increase sound quality (like boosteroo)?
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Old 05-18-2008, 10:57 AM
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Generally, I have learned that if dfkt has it, then its more than good enough for me.

The Corda Headsix is a really good deal for a very small portable amplifier...
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Old 05-18-2008, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h1a8 View Post
Is there a setting on the headsix to increase ohms to 300 or other levels?
I have 16ohm sony MDR-EX85LP earbuds (similar to the one that comes with the a810 and a720).
Are other headphone amps pretty good for boosting the impedance to increase sound quality (like boosteroo)?
When you use an amp with your MP3 player, you don't have to worry about impedances. My Headsix and PA2V2 work with any phone between 12 and 300 Ohm.

I've only heard bad things about the Boostaroo, it should sound quite awful. But what to expect for that price? For decent cheap amps maybe look at the PA2V2, Go-Vibe, Mini^3, iBasso, or some decent CMOY, like the Penguin amp. Some of them only cost a little more than the Boostaroo, and all of them should sound a lot better.

Here's a good thread about lots of portable amps: http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f5/rev...mpared-214588/

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xenodius View Post
Generally, I have learned that if dfkt has it, then its more than good enough for me.

The Corda Headsix is a really good deal for a very small portable amplifier...
Heh, thanks for the faith.

The Headsix (and Corda XXS, since it's the same amp) sure is one step up from the ones I mentioned above, and the price/value certainly is among the best. Other comparable amps cost at least twice as much as (RSA Hornet/Tomahawk, Headamp Pico, etc).
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Old 05-19-2008, 05:02 AM
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What about connecting using a bluetooth transmitter/receiver?That way the D2 wouldnt "see" the headphones, but would that add its own distortions?
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